High angle view of happy African American family communicating while having Thanksgiving lunch in dining room.

Navigating Food Choices This Holiday Season

The holidays are a challenging time of year for anyone working on their relationship with food. Food is often the centerpiece of celebration across all cultures making its challenges impossible to ignore. If you are experiencing any stress or anxiety around your pattern of eating this holiday season, these strategies will help put you at ease. 

  1. Eat Normally Leading Up to Thanksgiving

You don’t have to skip meals in attempt to save calories for Thanksgiving dinner. In fact, this strategy can often backfire. Deprivation leads to overeating. If you want to sit down for Thanksgiving dinner feeling in control of your food choices and emotions around food, it’s going to start with a stomach that is not ravenously hungry.

How Many Times a Day Should You Eat to Stay Healthy? Optimal Meal Timing


  1. Prioritize Protein and Fiber

There are most likely going to be lots of options for you to choose from this Thanksgiving. Protein and fiber will help keep your feeling full and satisfied longer. So, when you are scoping out what you want to put on your plate, prioritize protein and fruit and vegetables. With that being said, remember that food is meant to be enjoyed and that you can be flexible by eating foods that satisfy your cravings. Additionally, you don’t have to “healthily” a recipe in order to eat it because what you decide to eat most of the time matters more than what you eat some of the time. Allow yourself to be present in moment, enjoying good company and food, free from added stress and guilt from food choices. 

Whole Foods Will Insure Your Thanksgiving Meal Just in Case Your Turkey  Gets Burnt | Travel + Leisure

  1. Allow Yourself to Enjoy Food

You are completely in control of the food decisions this holiday season. You can build your Thanksgiving plate based on health, satisfaction, or a mixture of both. This decision is completely up to you. Unfortunately, the holidays are a time when those around you may try to police your food choices or make comments towards their approach to dieting around the holidays. In these situations, it’s okay to change the subject, ask politely for them not to make comments about your food, and to simply say “no”. 

If you have spent previous Thanksgivings feeling out of control around food and overly full by the end of the meal, these tips can help you. You are capable of feeling confident in your food choices this holiday season. 

Would you spend $30 to eat Thanksgiving dinner with your family? - Deseret  News

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